Tag Archives: pictures

FA Cup semi-finals: Phone camera photographers given same accreditation as professionals

Think you can do better than this Prove it! Smartphone snappers get FA Cup chance at Wembley

By
Alex Horlock

PUBLISHED:

10:11 GMT, 10 April 2013

|

UPDATED:

11:06 GMT, 10 April 2013

A Newcastle fan tweeted a snap of Papiss Cisse leaping into the stands to celebrate his stoppage-time winner against Fulham on Sunday which eased the Toon Army’s relegation fears.

Jonny Robson, from South Shields, has received praise galore on Twitter after taking the extraordinary photo of the wild scenes at St James’ Park – and has even been messaged by Cisse himself and Gary Lineker.

But it may just be the first of many. Smartphones will battle with long lenses at The FA Cup this weekend as, for the first time, some of the web’s best amateur photographers are given the same level of accreditation as their professional counterparts.

Amateur This photograph of Papiss Cisse was tweeted by a Newcastle fan after his last-minute winner

Amateur This photograph of Papiss Cisse was tweeted by a Newcastle fan after his last-minute winner

Winner: Cisse struck late in the game to sink Fulham at St James' Park at the weekend

Winner: Cisse struck late in the game to sink Fulham at St James' Park at the weekend

Impressed: Cisse tweeted about the picture after seeing it on the social networking site

Impressed: Cisse tweeted about the picture after seeing it on the social networking site

FA Cup sponsor Budweiser will select 'Phoneographers' – amateur photographers who shoot solely on smartphones – to become the tournament’s first official social reporters capturing, editing and sharing all the action from the semi-finals.

The lucky Phoneographers will shoot pitch-side alongside professional sports photographers, getting a perspective of the game that an amateur photographer can only dream about.

The Phoneographer’s images will be shared on Twitter under the hashtag #tothedream.

Stiff competition: There have been some stunning pictures in this season's FA Cup, including Demba Ba's goal

Stiff competition: There have been some stunning pictures in this season's FA Cup, including Demba Ba's goal

In focus: The 'phoneographers' will get the chance to capture images of the likes of Manchester City's Carlos Tevez

In focus: The 'phoneographers' will get the chance to capture images of the likes of Manchester City's Carlos Tevez

Iain Newell, Budweiser’s UK Marketing Director, said: ‘We’re thrilled to be bringing these avid football and photography fans closer to the game they love in a way they can share with other fans in stadium and at home.

It reflects the changing way people get their football updates and our desire to bring the magic of The FA Cup even closer to the fans, which social media certainly has the potential to do.’

Rob Green: I"d joined QPR as No1 but Mark Hughes told me I could leave

Green: I'd joined QPR to be the No 1 keeper but then Hughes told me I could leave whenever I liked

|

UPDATED:

23:27 GMT, 8 December 2012

Rob Green remembers the precise moment when his world turned upside down at Queens Park Rangers.

The England star's bag was packed and he was about to leave home for a Capital One Cup clash against Walsall in late August when he flicked on the television to catch up with the sports news and saw pictures of Brazil World Cup goalkeeper Julio Cesar arriving at Loftus Road.

Green, who had signed from West Ham just a few weeks earlier in the belief that he would be first-choice goalkeeper at Rangers, had heard rumours of Cesar joining but insists he had been assured by the club that it was just 'paper talk'. Now, in front of his disbelieving eyes, it had become reality.

Eye on the jersey: QPR keeper Rob Green

Eye on the jersey: QPR keeper Rob Green

As Green reflected on events that he says were the worst moments in his 16 years as a professional, he recalled his shock at realising the new challenge he had planned for himself at QPR was about to go horribly wrong.

'I came to QPR looking for a new challenge after six years at West Ham, a wonderful time capped off by promotion at Wembley,' said Green. 'Kevin Hitchcock, the goalkeeping coach at QPR, is an old mate and I came to work for him on the understanding that I was first choice. I'd played for England in May, I was in the European Championship squad and, at 32, I'm in the prime of my life.

'If he'd said to me we're also going to sign someone who's won Serie A five times and the Champions League and is one of the biggest names in South American football, I would have thought twice before signing.'

Out of luck: Mark Hughes was sacked as QPR boss

Out of luck: Mark Hughes was sacked as QPR boss

Green says that when he saw the news that Cesar was joining QPR, he rang the club and asked what was going on.

'I said I'd just seen Cesar turn up at the ground,' said Green. 'They replied, “Oh, is he here, then” I thought to myself, “OK, now I've got to get my head around this and go off and play a football match”.'

Hail Cesar: Julio Cesar in action for QPR

Hail Cesar: Julio Cesar in action for QPR

Ever the professional, Green did just that and QPR won comfortably on the night, but the goalkeeper still needed some answers.

'I'd read rumours in the press about Julio coming, but when I asked officials at the club they dismissed it as paper talk and said he wasn't going to sign. Now that the Brazilian had joined the club I needed to know where I stood.

'I asked (the then manager) Mark Hughes. He told me Julio was going to play, that I'd done nothing wrong and that he wanted two top keepers competing for the position. I replied, “Well, if he's going straight into the first team he's not really competing, is he Where does that leave me” Hughes replied, “You're free to leave whenever you want”. It wasn't quite what I wanted to hear.'

Green has known the highs and lows of professional football.

The
last-minute injury which ruled him out of the 2006 World Cup and the
blunder that allowed the United States to equalise in the 2010 World Cup
must be weighed against a long and successful career at Norwich and
West Ham and his 12 England caps. But Green says he had never
experienced anything like this.

'During
my talks with the club they admitted they had done this with not a
great deal of consideration of where it left me,' he said.

'It made me
realise that I would struggle to play because Julio is a couple of
months older than me, and anyone looking in would soon be asking why
their top Brazilian, signed on a four-year contract, was not playing. I
couldn't compete on a financial level and it was out of my control. I
also knew Mark Hughes traditionally stuck with his preferred goalkeeper
at all his previous clubs.'

Green has no quarrel with Cesar.

Out in the cold: Rob green (back, centre) was shunned by former QPR boss Mark Hughes (right)

Out in the cold: Rob green (back, centre) was shunned by former QPR boss Mark Hughes (right)

'The first thing Julio did on arriving at the club was to seek me out and shake my hand, which I appreciated,' he admitted. 'He's a nice fellow who hasn't done anything wrong. I remember saying to Brian Murphy, an Irish keeper also at the club, “This is going to make my situation even harder as Julio's such a nice guy”.

'The last game I played for QPR under the Hughes regime was our defeat at Manchester City, and by then I'd been told, even before the kick-off, that I would be dropped for him afterwards.'

Green's exile would last the best part of three months.

'In a 16-year professional career I'd been dropped twice for four-week periods. This was, by far, the longest out of first-team action. I made the most of it by clearing up niggling injuries, getting fitter with a personal trainer and joining a local gym to add to my daily training, analysing myself and others as keepers and realising that negative things have happened to me before and I've seen them out.' It was clear, however, that he was making no headway with his manager.

'The manager and I never spoke, but it was clear I wasn't happy,' he added.

In the hot seat: Harry Redknapp is the new manager of QPR

In the hot seat: Harry Redknapp is the new manager of QPR

Meanwhile, QPR slumped to the bottom of the Premier League with no wins, eight defeats and just four points from their opening 12 league games. The inevitable happened a fortnight ago when Hughes was sacked and Harry Redknapp became the new boss.

Green is not prepared to admit that the departure of Hughes gave him cause to celebrate, but the events hardly surprised him.

'It wasn't too difficult a decision for the board to make, was it' he said. 'We hadn't won a game. You've got to draw the line somewhere. I've seen 18 managers go at the clubs I've been playing for. It's a part of football, isn't it It's not like a steel worker in Sheffield getting a paltry pay-off and no new job prospects. I'm sure he was disappointed but he'll get another job in football.'

Nevertheless, Redknapp made an immediate impression on Green.

'At the end of his first training session Harry made a point of coming over to me. He had tried to sign me when he was at Portsmouth and Spurs, and it was good to hear him tell me how much he liked me as a keeper. It gave me a boost. That's why everyone in football likes him, and that's why he's a good manager. I said my bit about what had gone on and I told him all I wanted was a fair crack at it. He said it was a fresh start for everyone.'

Food for thought: Rob Green is keen to keep his QPR place

Food for thought: Rob Green is keen to keep his QPR place

Cesar started the next game, the draw at Sunderland, but he injured his groin and Green replaced him at half-time.

Green then played in the 1-1 home draw against Aston Villa, and the 2-2 draw at Wigan.

'I'm in the jersey now and it's up to me to play well enough to keep it,' said Green. 'I believe Harry when he says it's a fair fight on form alone so we'll see how it all turns out.'

Green believes that under Redknapp, and despite having a squad featuring 13 new signings still learning to gel, relegation is far from inevitable.

Man in possession: Rob Green in action for QPR against Wigan

Man in possession: Rob Green in action for QPR against Wigan

'I remember being at West Ham when we never got out of the drop zone all season under Avram Grant and the situation was only addressed 45 minutes after we got relegated when they got rid of the manager.

'It was a situation that needed to be addressed at QPR. How long do you leave these matters It hasn't helped having so many new players in the short term, even though I'm one of them.

'I don't want to sound like a member of UKIP but with so many different nations, cultures and languages there have been a lot of changes and it takes time to gel. I don't believe we've got close to our potential, the quality in the squad is high. Harry arriving has boosted us all, he has a track record of getting teams out of trouble, and with two or three wins we'd be out of this immediate mess.'

As for Green, his future at QPR is by no means certain. Cesar's injury is minor and he may even be back competing for the jersey next week. Green does not mind the competition.

'I back myself, I'm confident and I'm in great shape,' he said. 'Now that I've been assured it's a fair fight Julio will have to play well to get his jersey back.'

Bernie Ecclestone pictures burnt as Bahrain Grand Prix goes ahead

Really, Bernie As pics of F1 chief are torched in trouble-hit Bahrain, Ecclestone claims Gulf kingdom is 'quiet and peaceful' with green light for grand prix

|

UPDATED:

10:18 GMT, 13 April 2012

Pictures of Bernie Ecclestone have been burnt in Bahrain as the F1 supremo insists it is safe to stage next week's grand prix in the troubled Gulf kingdom.

The decision to go ahead with the race comes despite continuing unrest following anti-government protests which resulted in the deaths of a number of demonstrators last year.

Despite pictures of violence and riots in Bahrain, Ecclestone has claimed there is nothing wrong.

This came as pictures emerged of his image being burnt in Bahrain. They were posted on a Facebook paged titled 'Pearl Family Circle – Martyrs’ Square'

But the 81-year-old said: 'All the teams are happy to be there. There's nothing happening. I know people who live there and it's all very quiet and peaceful.'

Warning: The image of Bernie Ecclestone (left) is torched in this Facebook image.

Warning: The image of Bernie Ecclestone (left) is torched in this Facebook image.

Daily street clashes in Bahrain and threats to target the race by anti-government protesters have heightened concerns in the travelling Formula One community ahead of the fourth race of the season.

An explosion, apparently caused by a gas canister, damaged two cars in Manama on Thursday night, while seven policemen were wounded by a home-made bomb outside the capital on Monday in what the Interior Ministry called an 'act of terrorism'. Bahrain is also home to the U.S. Navy's Fifth Fleet.

The owners of the Bahrain International Circuit have expressed their confidence in staging a successful grand prix.

A statement read: 'The BIC has been clear throughout recent weeks and months the security situation in Bahrain is suitable for the staging of a major sporting event.

'This assessment has been provided by experienced figures, from both inside and outside the Bahraini government, to motor racing entities which have travelled to Bahrain to do their own research.

'The certainty of those assessments have meant the BIC has been able to prepare as usual for the staging of the F1 grand prix and is therefore wholly confident the event will be organised with the efficiency that has been the hallmark of the BIC in the past.

Running battles: The well-publicised unrest has caused many to call for the race to be abandoned

Running battles: The well-publicised unrest has caused many to call for the race to be abandoned

Running battles: The well-publicised unrest has caused many to call for the race to be abandoned

'We hugely look forward both to an exciting sporting occasion and to extending the traditional warm Bahraini welcome to Formula One teams, administrators and fans visiting our country next week.'

Red Bull principal Christian Horner said teams will take extra security measures when they go to Bahrain.

'We take the security of all our employees very carefully and so inevitably as with other races sometimes extra precautions are taken,' he said. 'We'll do our best to ensure that all our guys and girls are in a secure environment.

'I think each team probably takes that into their own responsibility,' he said. 'There are other races that we go to that have risks associated with them and its down to each team how you address that. So next weekend will be no different.'

Ecclestone has continually stated he has no concerns regarding safety, despite apparent misgivings from teams and drivers.

And the sport's governing body, the
FIA, said in a statement: 'Based on the current information the FIA has
at this stage, it is satisfied that all the proper security measures are
in place for the running of a Formula One World Championship event in
Bahrain.

'Therefore, the FIA confirms that the 2012 Gulf Air F1 Grand Prix of Bahrain will go ahead as scheduled.'

Speaking out: Bernie Ecclestonetalks to the press on Friday at the Chinese Grand Prix

Speaking out: Bernie Ecclestonetalks to the press on Friday at the Chinese Grand Prix

Speaking out: Bernie Ecclestonetalks to the press on Friday at the Chinese Grand Prix

Formula 1 supremo Ecclestone was always confident the event would go ahead, despite the ongoing unrest.

Organisers
had to cancel last year's race at Sakhir due to civil unrest, have been
adamant that this year's event is safe to go ahead despite continuing
sectarian divisions and street violence in the kingdom as well as
threats targeting the grand prix.

Ecclestone was in confident form before the FIA's announcement in the early hours of Friday morning.

'We are here and we are going to be in Bahrain,' he said. 'It's another race on the calendar, it's scheduled.

'The only people that can do anything about it is the National Sporting Authority in the country.

'They can ask for it to be withdrawn from the calendar. Unless it gets withdrawn by them, then we'll be there.'

Ecclestone
has reiterated the fact he has no concerns regarding safety, despite
threats made by one protest group who have vowed to disrupt the race.

Asked
if he felt it would be safe, Ecclestone said: 'According to what I've
been told, yes. Apparently people are there carrying out their business
as normal, so I'm told.

'A
guy from Lotus went over to check things recently and he said it was
business as usual. But I don't know, I haven't been there.

'But
I don't see why it should be (dangerous). I don't think the people in
Bahrain have anything against Formula One team people or journalists.'

Ecclestone has again confirmed he will
be in attendance, adding: 'I shall be there, for sure. I hope everybody
is there. We shouldn't be getting involved with other people's
politics.

'We enter a country in the normal way. We don't deal with the religion or the politics.'

Next up: The F1 circus is currently in China before moving on to Bahrain

Next up: The F1 circus is currently in China before moving on to Bahrain

Meanwhile, John Yates, the former
assistant commissioner of the Metropolitan police who has been hired to
oversee reform of Bahrain's police has also said he felt safer in the
Gulf kingdom than he often did in London.

Yates is currently in Bahrain on a
short-term contract advising the government on police reform following
the publication of the Bahrain Independent Commission Inquiry (BICI)
report released in November last year.

The report followed the
anti-government protests that took place in the Gulf kingdom earlier in
the year, resulting in the deaths of a number of demonstrators.

He
claims the view of Bahrain is 'being shaped by a huge amount of
inaccurate and often deliberately false information being spread through
social media forums'.

Yates insists the 'willingness to reform is real and is being led from the highest level of government'.

He added: 'This is not to dismiss the fact some troubles do still exist.

'The almost nightly skirmishes that
take place in certain villages are a potential block on progress and are
putting those involved in their policing and innocent members of the
public in significant danger.

'However, in spite of how these
events may be portrayed through the medium of YouTube and other outlets,
their significance should not be overplayed.

'These are not lawful protests which are
permitted, but violent conduct by a very small minority – often groups
of 15-20 young men.

Racing focus: The teams are in China ahead of the weekend's race in Shanghai

Racing focus: The teams are in China ahead of the weekend's race in Shanghai

'These
are criminal acts being perpetrated against an unarmed police force who,
in the face of such attacks, are acting with remarkable restraint.

He added: 'These people are intent on causing harm to the police and the communities in which they live.

'They
are not representative of the vast majority of delightful, law-abiding
citizens that represent the real Bahrain that I see every day.'

In conclusion Yates wrote: 'Along with my family, I feel completely safe. Indeed, safer than I have often felt in London.'

Formula One's key players have set a
deadline of Saturday to decide the fate of the Bahrain Grand Prix as
violent political unrest continues to disturb the Gulf kingdom.

Representatives
of the 12 teams will meet with Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone
and Jean Todt, president of motorsport's world governing body the FIA,
at the Chinese Grand Prix in Shanghai.

The move comes after Ecclestone
claimed the decision to take part in the Bahrain race lay with the
teams, although he admitted that opting to pull out would see them
breach commercial agreements.

Before sitting down with Ecclestone
and Todt, teams will discuss their growing safety concerns about staging
a race in a country where anti- government protests are increasing by
the day.

The aim is to reach consensus on
whether they will race at the Sakhir Circuit on April 22 and try to
present a united front to the sport's two most powerful figures.

Confident: Red Bull's Christian Horner (left) believes the Bahrain Grand Prix will go ahead without disruption

Confident: Red Bull's Christian Horner (left) believes the Bahrain Grand Prix will go ahead without disruption

Meanwhile, Red Bull team principal Christian Horner believes the confusion previously surrounding the race has finally been alleviated.

Asked, however, whether he was happy with the decision, Horner gave an indirect reply as he said: 'The confusing thing has been the uncertainty.

'So I think for everybody here in the paddock now it's clear that there will be a race in Bahrain next week.

'The FIA have obviously done their research and come out with a clear statement that as a team entered into the championship we respect.'

The main question now for the teams is one of safety.

Civil unrest has so far mostly been confined to the villages where groups have clashed with police who have been forced to combat petrol bombs with water cannons, tear gas, stun grenades and rubber bullets.

However, on Thursday night an explosion rocked the capital of Manama, and although no-one was injured – just two cars damaged – it is the first serious incident to occur of late at the heart of the country.

'We take the security of all our employees very carefully, so inevitably as with other races sometimes extra precautions are taken,' added Horner.

'We'll do our best to ensure that all our guys and girls are in a secure environment, but I don't doubt that for a moment.'

Mario Balotelli to accept four-match ban for Scott Parker "stamp"

Balotelli set to accept four-match ban as City brand Parker 'stamp' appeal 'futile'

Manchester City are ready to accept Mario Balotelli's four-match ban for violent conduct after assistant manager David Platt suggested an appeal would be 'futile'.

The controversial Italian striker appeared to stamp on Tottenham midfielder Scott Parker's head during Sunday's 3-2 win at the Etihad Stadium – before his last-minute penalty winner kept City three points clear of the Barclays Premier League.

Platt confirmed no talks had taken
place amongst the City hierarchy and a final decision would not be made
until all relevant parties had an input into discussions.

In the spotlight: Mario Balotelli leaves training on Monday afternoon

In the spotlight: Mario Balotelli leaves training on Monday afternoon

However, whilst City do have
grievances over the manner in which Balotelli's alleged stamp on Scott
Parker has been dealt with, Platt accepted the slow-motion pictures 'do
not look good'.

'We are likely to be without a player for four games,' said Platt, who again appeared in place of manager Roberto Mancini at the club's training ground press conference on Tuesday morning.

'We found out the information last night and we have not sat down as a group to discuss it.

'But I don't think anybody thought we would win an appeal with Vincent Kompany, even though the majority of people didn't feel he deserved a red card or a four-match ban. It shows the futility of an appeal sometimes.

'This looks poor when you slow it down.'

Balotelli would become the second
Manchester City player to incur a four-match ban this month. He has
until 6pm on Wednesday to respond to a charge of violent conduct.
Flashpoint: Mario Balotelli appears to stamp onTottenham's Scott Parker

Stamp it out: Balotelli clashes with Parker and later scored the winner

It carries a three-match suspension
but the volatile Italian striker would serve an extra game because of
his dismissal at Liverpool in November.

City skipper Vincent Kompany is still
banned after receiving the same punishment a fortnight ago for his
second red card of the season.

If Balotelli accepts the charge –
which appears likely now – he will miss a return to Anfield in the
Carling Cup semi-final second leg on Wednesday night and league games
against Everton, Fulham and Aston Villa.

Should he contest it, he can play
against Liverpool but risks being banned for the home League game
against Blackburn instead when the case goes before a disciplinary
panel.

What annoys City is that they believe referee Howard Webb got a good enough view of it at the time to reach a decision, opted to do nothing, but then allowed the FA to take control0.

'It seems inconsistent,' said Platt.

'I have seen it from an angle where I can think the referee saw it live, like I did.

'Other people saw it live and didn't react, nobody, not one of the Tottenham players or staff. The referee didn't react live. It is when you slow it down that all the reactions come.

'I don't know what has gone on but there seems a huge inconsistency in refereeing matches on a Monday morning.

'Shouldn't you revisit everything that has happened over the weekend'

Flashpoint: Balotelli stumbles backwards over Parker...

Flashpoint: Balotelli stumbles backwards over Parker…

.... his foot connects with the Spurs midfielder's head...

…. his foot connects with the Spurs midfielder's head…

...and then appears to stamp down with some force

…and then appears to stamp down with some force

The charge came from the Football
Association after referee Howard Webb indicated he would have shown a
straight red had he seen the incident.

With Parker on the floor after
blocking Balotelli’s shot, the City player caught his opponent in the
face with his left leg and then appeared to bring his right foot down on
the midfielder’s head.

PFA chairman Clarke Carlisle backed
any punishment if the 21-year-old, who has three red cards and 15
yellows in his 47 games for City, is found guilty.

'It’s not proven what his intentions
were, but if it’s shown that he did purposefully stamp that’s something
we want eradicated,' said Carlisle.

'You’re going all out to win, you have the aggression, but you know where to draw the line.'

Great Scott: Parker looks battered and bruised after the confrontation

Great Scott: Parker looks battered and bruised after the confrontation

On Sky on Sunday, pundit Graeme Souness described Balotelli as “a car
Balotelli was branded 'stupid' by Mancini following the second of those, against Dynamo Kiev in the Europa League last season.

However, the City boss was more
forgiving when he was dismissed for two debatable yellow cards during a
Premier League meeting with Liverpool at Anfield in November.

Paying the penalty: Balotelli won the spot kick and converted the opportunity to take all three points for City

Paying the penalty: Balotelli won the spot kick and converted the opportunity to take all three points for City

Paying the penalty: Balotelli won the spot kick and converted the opportunity to take all three points for City

There have been other off-field
incidents that have sometimes even led to City supporters questioning
Balotelli's contribution, not least the incident in October when fire
crews were called to his house in Cheshire when he attempted to set off
fireworks in his bathroom.

Platt confirmed he had been asked to
address the media by Roberto Mancini in an effort to avoid
the Italian's difficulty with the nuances of the English language
further fuelling an already delicate situation.

'He spoke to me last night and asked me to do it,' said Platt.

Cool, calm, collected: Balotelli celebrates his winner in his usual style

Cool, calm, collected: Balotelli celebrates his winner in his usual style

'A lot of words needed saying and we are in a cauldron where a half phrase can become bigger.

'Whatever I say today can get topped
and tailed and, in some quarters, won't be reported in the manner I have
said it, and I am not talking about the people who are here, but those
who are not.'

There was better news for City with the FA deciding not to take action against Joleon Lescott over a clash with Younes Kaboul.